Maurizio Sarri's time at Napoli could be coming to an end, with a transfer expert saying it would be a real surprise if the manager remained in Naples beyond the end of the season.
Sarri, who took over at the club in 2015, has been at odds with chairman Aurelio de Laurentiis for some time and is unlikely to be in charge next term, especially after his side threw their Scudetto chances away in a draw with Torino this past weekend.
Rai transfer market expert Ciro Venerato has shed some light on the situation brewing at Napoli, also giving his thoughts on how things could turn out.
"On Maurizio Sarri, the situation is this: I think the chances of a contract renewal with Aurelio de Laurentiis are slim," he said, via areanapoli.it. "I do not say it's impossible, but I would be amazed if the manager renewed and I would be surprised if he carried on in Naples, one way or another.
"Sarri will look to end things and Napoli will have to look for a new coach. But we must also understand how the split will take place. The coach or club should pay the clause. The coach could say he wants to leave in the absence of that, but how?
According to La Gazzetta, the relationship between Napoli President ADL and coach Maurizio Sarri has hit an all time low. Apart from Chelsea, Sarri's camp has been in contact with Monaco, Tottenham & Borussia Dortmund— Matteo Bonetti (@TheCalcioGuy) May 6, 2018
"Aurelio could stop him, compel him to respect the contract and keep him there until September. There is the institute of resignation, but that is a legal matter."
Venerato also explained the reasoning behind Sarri's disgruntlement at Napoli, with De Laurentiis's penchant for airing dirty laundry believed to be the overriding factor.
He added: "We know De Laurentiis, after Real Madrid there were strong words that Sarri did not like. He did not like the recent ones either. He is disappointed and embittered, but he knows the character of De Laurentiis, who sometimes says things publicly Sarri would rather be told in private.
"Juventus and Max Allegri had their issues, but kept things private. Maybe Sarri suspects De Laurentiis says such things to discourage other clubs from approaching him."
The chairman's statements aren't likely to discourage any suitors, but Chelsea, who are said to have lined the manager up to replace Antonio Conte, aren't willing to pay his €8m release clause.
"Chelsea remain the most interested club, but they aren't willing to pay Sarri's clause as they will already have to pay Antonio Conte if they sack him," he continued.
Meanwhile, Sarri has said that there is enough time to sort things out in relation to the much talked about contractual clause.
"I’ve always tried to do my best for the team and if I have to leave, it’s not for what the president has said. There is a contract that has a clause worth €8m. We have 11 days to evaluate the situation and that is more than enough time."